" A wealth of information..."

"1169 And Counting is a wealth of information on our Republican past and present , and demonstrates how the Irish political landscape , like that of any nation, will never be a black and white issue..."

(From the ‘e-Thursday’ section of the ‘Business Week’ supplement of the ‘Irish Independent’ , 21st August 2008.)

IRISH BLOG AWARDS 2017 - we made it to the finalists page last year but never got to the stage :- ( 'cause not enough of ye feckers out there voted for us! So we're gonna give ya a second chance - the blog awards this year will be held on Thursday, October 5th (2017) in The Academy, Middle Abbey Street, in Dublin city centre, and we would appreciate if you could keep an eye here and give us a vote when ya can. Or else we'll get our 'Junior' to put up a pay wall and then ye will be sorry...!

Saturday, May 29, 2004

JOSEPH BRENAN ; 1828-1857 : 'Young Ireland' Leader .......

Joseph Brenan was born into Daniel O'Connell's time ; huge crowds attended meetings of 'The Catholic Association' , and one eye-witness gave the following account .......

" The whole district was covered with people . The population within a days march began to arrive on foot shortly after daybreak and continued to arrive , on all sides and by every available approach , 'till noon . It was impossible from any one point to see the entire meeting - the number is supposed to have reached between 500,000 and 700,000 persons ."

The population was upset ; they had to contend with hunger , evictions and early death . They were living like animals - a visitor from France , Gustav de Beaumont , described the conditions that Joseph Brenan , too, would have seen in Ireland at that time (ie the early 19th Century) -

- " Imagine four walls of dried mud , which the rain , as it falls, easily restores to its primitive condition , having for its roof a little straw of some sods , for its chimney a hole cut in the roof , or very frequently the door through which alone the smoke finds an issue . One single appartment (sic ?) contains father , mother , children and sometimes a grandfather or grandmother ; there is no furniture in this wretched hovel - a single bed of straw serves the entire family .

Five or six half-naked children may be seen crouched near a miserable fire , the ashes of which cover a few potatoes , the sole nourishment of the whole family . "

The English 'Establishment' and their 'Landlord' puppets had their fine gala-balls and sporting-days , while the Irish 'lived' in " wretched hovels ...". However - we all of us have to answer to our God one day .......



war and peace in rebel Cork ,
in the turbulent years 1916-21.

By Micheal O'Suilleabhain : published 1965.


".......If left alone , we would pass as a mixture of Black and Tans and Auxiliaries and we all struck a superior posture in the car , as they do . We were ready to engage them if we had to , but they were not our target this day ......."

" We were now in Washington Street , Cork , and soon we could see to the end of it . We watched the junction with Main Street - all clear , but what would the Grand Parade reveal ? We swept gracefully into it in a right hand quarter-circle , while our eyes instinctively swept from Patrick Street corner to the Mall , noting particularly Tuckey Street corner . Soon we were past that abode of a vile mix - RIC and Black and Tans . Turning left , we were in the South Mall ; a few hundred yards , and we turned right over Parliament Bridge , across the south channel of the River Lee .

Crossing the quay , we went up Barrack Street and past Cat Fort Gate , where a Black and Tan sentry stood with sloped rifle . He brought his right hand across to the small of the butt , then down smartly to his side - a salute for us ! The first half of it looked bad , but good manners carry one a long way ; a few of us returned the salute wearily ! Some little time after passing by Cat Fort , we over-ran our road to the left - there was some doubt as to where the next road to the left led , and we decided to enquire . This proved to be more troublesome than we expected : we could see people approaching us as if hurrying to work , yet they never reached us . They turned in a doorway or a gateway or a street , so we rushed to the corner of the street to shout after them but they had vanished !

We felt that we were not popular . At length we chased a young man going in our own direction , and grabbed him as he turned in a wicket-gate - he was frightened , but would tell us nothing ......."



By Carol Coulter.

(First published in 'The Irish Times' newspaper on Monday 22nd April 1985).

Reproduced here in 7 parts .

[7 of 7].

In the next election , in 1981 , the 'Workers Party' , formed ten years earlier out of a split in Sinn Fein , won a seat in the Dail (sic- Leinster House) after three attempts in the three previous elections . In 1982 it won three seats , with 2.3 per cent of the vote , but lost one in the subsequent election , though its share of the vote remained almost the same .

The only other small party to have won seats in the Dail (sic) is Sinn Fein , which contested the 1957 election on an abstentionist platform and won four seats ; it lost them all in 1961 , and did not contest another election until 20 years later , in 1981 , when it was heavily involved in the election campaigns of the H-Block prisoners who ran to highlight the Hunger-Strike .

Of obvious necessity , they ran on an abstentionist platform and two of the Republican prisoners , Paddy Agnew and Kieran Doherty , were elected ; Doherty died on Hunger-Strike , and Paddy Agnew did not run in 1982 .

(Tomorrow - 'GETTING OUT' ; from 'New Statesman and Society' magazine , 1988).